Real InterContinental (Zona 10, Guatemala City; tel. 502/2379-4446; www.interconti.com): There are a host of high-end business-class hotels in Guatemala City, but this one tops them all in terms of rooms, amenities, facilities, location, and service. The InterContinental sits on a busy corner of the Zona Viva, with shops, restaurants, bars, and more just steps away in every direction.
Casa Santo Domingo (Antigua; tel. 502/7820-1220; www.casasantodomingo.com.gt): You can sometimes get lost on the extensive grounds of this fabulous hotel. In addition to the fine rooms, excellent service, and colonial-era ambience, this place features museum-quality collections of art and artifacts, as well as a large amphitheater. The whole complex sits on, and is integrated into, the ruins of an old convent.
Posada del Angel (Antigua; tel. 502/7832-5303; www.posadadelangel.com): With just five beautiful rooms, this place gives you intimacy with your luxury, and is consistently considered one of the top hotels in the entire country. I like the second-floor suite, with its own private rooftop terrace.
Palacio de Doña Leonor (Antigua, Guatemala; tel. 502/7832-2281; www.palaciodeleonor.com): Although it's located in an old colonial mansion -- just off Antigua's main plaza -- that once belonged to Pedro de Alvarado's daughter, this hotel also offers up all the modern conveniences you could ask for. The suites have massive flatscreen televisions and Jacuzzis, but the decor and ambience are decidedly colonial and decadent.
Mesón Panza Verde (Antigua; tel. 502/7832-1745; www.panzaverde.com): This elegant and artistic Antigua hotel is one of Guatemala's top options. The immaculately restored old building is loaded with artwork and interesting architectural details, and there's a wonderful, mazelike rooftop terrace with panoramic views. The restaurant (below) is one of the best in the country.
Hotel Atitlán (Finca San Buenaventura, Panajachel; tel. 502/7762-1441; www.hotelatitlan.com): This fabulous hotel is set on the shores of Lake Atitlán, with a stunning view of the lake and its surrounding volcanoes. Beautiful rooms, lush gardens, ample amenities, impeccable service, and a great restaurant make this a complete package.
Casa Palopó (Carretera a San Antonio Palopó, Lake Atitlán; tel. 502/7762-2270; www.casapalopo.com): Artwork and interesting design touches abound in this boutique hotel, which is perched high on a hillside overlooking Lake Atitlán. The vibe here is hip, intimate, refined, and romantic, and the place is perfect for couples. (Honeymooners should seriously consider it.) The restaurant is excellent.
La Lancha Resort (Lago Petén Itzá, Petén; tel. 800/746-3743 in the U.S., or tel./fax 502/7928-8331 in Guatemala; www.lalanchavillage.com): Set on a steep hillside overlooking the lake, this is the plushest hotel near Tikal. The rooms at this Francis Ford Coppola regional resort (he has two others in Belize) are decorated with style, featuring furniture and artwork from around the world. The food is also excellent, taking local cuisine as its inspiration and adding creative touches and refined twists.
Hotel Villa Caribe (Livingston; tel. 502/2223-5000 or 7947-0072; www.villasdeguatemala.com): My favorite rooms here are the individual bungalows, which are what earns this hotel a spot in this exclusive group. These rooms have air-conditioning, cable television, and minibars, which the other rooms lack. However, every room here has a private balcony with a commanding view of the Río Dulce river mouth and the Caribbean Sea.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.